Readers' Favorite

Featured Post

Reflections on the #AtoZChallenge

by Donna Huber For the A to Z Challenge, I discussed different book genres/categories. Each day, I gave a few details about the genre/catego...

November 3, 2023

One Puzzling Afternoon by Emily Critchley ~ a Review

by Donna Huber

It is 1951, and fifteen-year-old Edie Green is lonely. Living alone with her eccentric mother - who conducts seances for the local Ludthorpe community - she is desperate for something to shake her from her dull, isolated life. When the mayor's daughter befriends her, she thinks life will be better. But then Lucy goes missing.

Amazon affiliate links are used on this set. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of mystery novel One Puzzling Afternoon by Emily Critchley
October 2023; Sourcebooks Landmark; 978-1728287164
audio, ebook, print (368 pages); mystery

One Puzzling Afternoon
 is set in two time periods. 1951 is when Lucy goes missing and is never found. The other period is 2018 and Edie is 82 and dementia is leaving her muddled. It also takes her back to that fateful afternoon in 1951 when Lucy is supposed to meet her at the train station but goes missing.

Edie is very likable, and my heart went out to her as dementia steals more and more of her present. She is an unreliable narrator, though. How much of the past is she clearly remembering?

We are only given snippets of the past. The novel opens with Edie waiting at the train station but the next time we move back to 1951, it is shortly before Lucy and Edie become friends. We pretty much get new information as Edie remembers it in 2018, but with more detail when we go to 1951. That means we don't quite know what happened and there are a couple of top suspects. 

The story flows well back and forth between the two time periods. All the characters are interesting and feel real.

I enjoyed Critchley's writing. I've not read her other books - I think this might be her first book for adults. The Bear Who Sailed the Ocean in an Iceberg looks cute so I might have to read it.

If you are looking for a great mystery, I definitely recommend A Puzzling Afternoon. I did start to strongly suspect one of the characters towards the end and turned out to be right, but what I liked most about this novel was Edie's trip down memory lane. I'm really happy that the epilogue was included as it bridges the life Edie was living in 1951 with what we know of how her life turned out by 2018.

Donna Huber is an avid reader and natural encourager. She is the founder of Girl Who Reads and the author of how-to marketing book Secrets to a Successful Blog Tour.

Enjoyed this post? Never miss out on future posts by following us. Get even more book news in your inbox, sign up for our newsletter today! Or Follow Girl Who Reads with Bloglovin. Girl Who Reads is an Amazon advertising affiliate; a small commission is earned when purchases are made at Amazon using any Amazon links on this site. Thank you for supporting Girl Who Reads.


Post a Comment